Top 5 most memorable Oscars hosts of all time
Writer: Heidi Hsia
Celebs getting roasted by Oscars hosts are the norm
30 Mar – Long before Will Smith's hand came in contact with Chris Rock's face, the Oscars has had its fair share of controversies surrounding its presenters and hosts. From Chris Rock (yes, him again) bringing three Asian children to the stage and introducing them as the "accountants" when he hosted the show in 2016, to Seth MacFarlane's musical number, "We Saw Your Boobs", it was almost a routine for these hosts - who are mostly comedians - to ruffle some feathers.
But there are some who passed the test when it comes to hosting the prestigious events that the Academy decided to get them to host more than once. From Ellen DeGeneres and her viral selfie, to Jimmy Kimmel inviting tourists into the theatre, it is not easy to make a choice on who's the best one. But here are the five (of the many) most celebrated Academy Awards' hosts of all time:
"I see a lot of new faces here, especially on the old faces."
The original King of Late Night hosted five times from 1979 for four consecutive years before taking a two-year break and hosted again in 1984. His experience in late-night television made him the perfect host, since he was already well-respected by the stars.
"It's not fair Will was this good in Concussion and wasn't nominated. It's also not fair that Will was paid $20 million for Wild Wild West."
Yes, love him or hate him, Rock brings an edge to the ceremony. He might not be Ricky Gervais (who the Oscars never invited, maybe for obvious reasons), but Rock's nonchalance about saying all things controversial and his loud personality was a welcome to the otherwise dull event. He did turn down hosting the 2019 Oscars (though still presented alongside Chris Martin) after the Kevin Hart debacle, expressing his frustrations that comedians seemed to no longer be able to make offensive jokes...
Well, we know now the consequence of that...
"Elisabeth Shue played a hooker. Mira Sorvino played a hooker. Sharon Stone played a hooker. How many times did Charlie Sheen get to vote?"
She is not only the first woman and the first African-American to host solo, she also hosted the Academy Awards four times. Known for her many elaborate costumes and edgy '90s jokes, Goldberg would not shy away from poking fun at celebrities but also the audience members as well.
"Enjoy yourselves because nothing can take the sting out of the world's economic problems like watching millionaires present each other with golden statues."
Crystal is the Oscars and the Oscars is Crystal. The comedian has hosted the awards from 1988 to 2012, and remained the best among all the classic Oscars hosts. He joked, he sang, and he was just oh-so likable that the Oscars decided to hire him nine times!
"And I'm really not this fat. I'm wearing a tuxedo with a bullet-proof cummerbund. Who knows what will happen if Al Pacino doesn't win."
The British-American comedian and actor has hosted the Oscars more than anybody else to date, taking the stage for the first time in 1940 and went on to be the face of the Academy Awards until 1978. Known for his witty one-liners, Hope was one of the first hosts who had the guts to be controversial, paving ways for more comedians to do the same in years to come.
Cinema Online, 30 March 2022